Books and Publishing, Education and Schools, Entertainment, Free News Articles

Laguna College of Art and Design Welcomes Best-Selling Author Dean Koontz

LAGUNA BEACH, Calif. -- Laguna College of Art and Design (LCAD) hosted New York Times Best-Selling Author, Dean Koontz on Tuesday, July 11 at LCAD's historic Main Campus in Laguna Beach for an exclusive speaking engagement.

The celebrated author spoke to an intimate crowd of approximately 35 attendees comprised of students of author and LCAD Liberal Arts professor Gwendolyn Oxenham's Introduction to Nonfiction: Literary Survey, Analysis, and Application course; LCAD trustees; and select Liberal Arts faculty. Koontz spoke candidly about the business of writing and publishing fiction.

"You need to know about the business," Koontz advised students. "If you're not learning about business, you will be a victim. I don't think writers should be victimized."

Koontz, published in 38 languages, spoke of his love for writing that drove him to produce more than 120 novels across multiple genres. His books have sold over 450 million copies to date. When asked how writers can tell fresh, original stories, he said, "The most natural way about it is: who are you as a person and a writer and what about your way of your personal style and way of seeing the world. That will lead you into handling anything differently than other people."

After his talk, Koontz took the time to sign copies of his books brought by students and fans alike.

"Dean's commitment to his craft and passion for storytelling inspired all of us to hold our work to the same level of excellence he has pursued in his 40-year career," said Jonathan Burke, president of LCAD. "We will never forget our morning with him and thank him for taking time from his writing schedule to share his experiences and hard-won lessons with our students."

LCAD's Liberal Arts curriculum aims to elevate each student from an artist with great technical skills to a complete artist who becomes an active citizen of the world with the power to affect positive change through thoughtful and creative work. The department offers a minor in Creative Writing led by published LCAD faculty who regularly lead panels on the writing process - from research and writing to submitting work for publication. Outside of the classroom, the College's newly expanded, Dennis and Leslie Power Library hosts regular open mic nights and special reading events featuring LCAD students and faculty.

For more information about LCAD's Liberal Arts department, including its Creative Writing minor: https://www.lcad.edu/site/liberal-arts/

About Laguna College of Art and Design:
Founded in 1961, Laguna College of Art and Design (LCAD) is one of the top art and design schools in the nation. LCAD offers undergraduate degrees (BFA) in Animation, Drawing and Painting, Entertainment Design, Game Art, Graphic Design + Digital Media, and Illustration, as well as Master of Fine Arts degrees (MFA) in Art of Game Design, Drawing, and Painting. LCAD Fine Arts alumni are accepted to the most prestigious graduate programs and go on to become internationally recognized artists and educators who shape dialogue with renowned collectors, museums and gallerists. The Dennis and Leslie Power Library at LCAD houses the historic archives of the College and The Rex and Joan Irving Brandt Papers.

For more information about LCAD admissions, news, events and Annual Fund, visit https://www.lcad.edu/.

Facebook at @LCADBFA, Twitter @LCAD and Instagram @lcadbfa.

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Free News Articles, NonProfit and Charities, Regional Events

Nationally Renowned Research Doctor Will Discuss His New Hopes, Methods, and Successes with Treating Rare Children’s Cancers on Nov. 5, 2017

LAKE FOREST, Calif. -- Jareds Juggernaut To Cure Sarcoma, a non-profit which funds researchers of body sparing cancer treatments targeted for rare children's cancers, today announced an event which features Dr. Charles Keller as the keynote speaker, which will take place on November 5, 2017 in the Sun and Sail Club in Lake Forest, Calif.

While many types of cancers have had improved survival outcomes over recent years due to new drugs and other clinical innovations, there are certain cancers that have not progressed appreciably in their survival rates or in developing new methodologies and drug protocols for decades.

Unfortunately, these cancers primarily affect children and young adults. Since the number of patients diagnosed with these deadly diseases annually is small, compared with other types of cancers, such as breast, prostate and colon, they are treated as "orphan" diseases which translate into less emphasis by the drug companies and medical establishment in finding treatments and cures for these forms of cancer.

It is therefore left to dedicated researchers and grass roots support groups to "pick up the slack" and help those kids afflicted with these deadly diseases by finding new drug protocols and techniques to stop the cancers from metastasizing at worst or to stop the cancer cells from developing at best.

Dr. Charles Keller founded the Children's Cancer Therapy Development Institute in Oregon to bridge scientific discovery and the initiation of clinical trials.

Charles's research focuses on the development of more effective, less toxic therapies for childhood cancers. His special interest is advanced disease that has spread beyond the initial location of the cancer. Charles co-chairs the brain tumor developmental therapeutics committee (CNS-DVL) of the Children's Oncology Group and is a member of the soft tissue sarcoma (STS) committee of Children's Oncology Group.

He recently completed a 5-year rotation as a Standing Member of the National Cancer Institute NCI-I Study Section. Charles has authored over 80 scientific publications and is a recognized expert in the biology of childhood sarcomas and the preclinical investigation of childhood cancers. Charles is also a co-founder of First Ascent Biomedical, a company developing personalized medical approaches to therapy for canine and human solid tumor patients.

Dr. Keller will be speaking on November 5, 2017 at the Sun and Sail Club on Lake Forest Drive in Lake Forest California. He will be discussing his research objectives and some of the resultant outcomes and successes. His keynote speech will be part of an event that will go from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Entertainment and refreshments will be available as well as dancing will be encouraged.

The cost for the event is $28 per person with all proceeds going to cancer research. Since the sponsor is a non-profit 501(c)(3), the ticket price will be tax deductible.

To register for this event or for further information call (949)472-4278, or go to following link to RSVP http://www.signupgenius.com/go/5080e4da5a629a2fe3-thespacexinspired

About Jareds Juggernaut To Cure Sarcoma (JJCUR):

JJCUR is a 501(c)(3) non-profit which was started after the founders' 26 year old son, Jared Steven Grossman, died after fighting Rhabdomyosarcoma for five years. The protocol that Jared was given was one that was in place for twenty years and had a less than 20 percent survival rate for his stage of the disease. We found that the chemo and radiation was almost as devastating to Jared's body as the cancer itself and, after he died, we vowed that we would work hard to support researchers who were innovative and looked for body sparing methods to fight cancers.

To learn more log on to: http://www.jaredsjuggernaut.org/.

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Entertainment, Fine Art and Artists, Free News Articles, Regional Events

Celebrate Art beginning June 30 with the 2017 Laguna Art-A-Fair

LAGUNA BEACH, Calif. -- Laguna Art-A-Fair is one of the premier fine arts summer destinations in Southern California and has been for more than 50 years. Our artists invite you to Celebrate Art beginning June 30, 2017 with a full spectrum of unique original creations, affordable reproductions, art demonstrations, workshops, live music and excellent cuisine.

The festival features over 120 fine artists and artisans from around the world. Stroll the festival grounds and be entranced by the imagination and originality that surround you. Take advantage of the opportunity to watch artists as they create new masterpieces and share the sources of their inspiration and special techniques that make their art truly unique.

Daily art workshops provide a rewarding opportunity for beginning and intermediate artists who are at least 16 years old to learn new techniques and expand their artistic horizons. Taught by award-winning professional artists, class size is limited to six students to maximize personal attention. Weekly classes offer four hour and two hour sessions in Oil, Acrylic, Watercolor, Mixed Media, Jewelry and Leather Work with all supplies included.

Thursdays through Sundays, enjoy a wide variety of live music performed by favorite local musicians with dancing in the entertainment courtyard. Savor award-winning margaritas and south-of-the-border snacks and entrees at Tivoli Too!, the full-service restaurant retreat located on the festival grounds.

A giant art palette landmark has been added at the festival front entrance and the entryway features a fresh new look. The art booth layout has been redesigned for easier airflow and navigation and the entertainment courtyard upgraded with a dance floor and comfortable seating.

Celebrate Art this summer with Laguna Art-A-Fair! Open daily from June 30 through September 3, 2017. Further information is available at http://art-a-fair.com or 949-494-4514.

Laguna Art-A-Fair
PO Box 547, Laguna Beach, CA 92652
Web: http://art-a-fair.com/.

CALENDAR LISTING:
Event Name: Laguna Art-A-Fair
Event Date: June 30, 2017 - September 3, 2017.
Event Location: 777 Laguna Canyon Rd, Laguna Beach, CA 92651.
Admission: Season Pass - Adults $8; Seniors (65+), Military, Students $6; Children 12 & under FREE with Adult; 'Pageant of the Masters' ticket holders admitted free on the day of ticketed performance.
Contact: info@art-a-fair.com or 949-494-4514
Description: Your summer destination for original fine arts, crafts, and affordable reproductions along with art workshops and demonstrations, live entertainment and great cuisine at Tivoli Too!

Twitter: @lagunaartafair #lagunaartafair

MULTIMEDIA:
* PHOTO for media: Send2Press.com/mediaboom/17-0626s2p-whitacre-300dpi.jpg
* Photo Caption: Laguna Art-A-Fair entry sculpture by Ron Whitacre. (Photo credit: Jay Mason).

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Business, Free News Articles

Mortgage Automation Pioneer Hires Veteran Tech Entrepreneur Michael Schreck as CEO

IRVINE, Calif. -- Cloudvirga(SM), developer of next-generation loan officer and direct-to-consumer point-of-sale (POS) systems, has named Michael Schreck its chief executive officer. He succeeds cloudvirga co-founder Bill Dallas, who will continue as chairman of cloudvirga's board of directors.

Schreck joins cloudvirga on the heels of a successful Series B funding round that netted the company $15 million led by Blackstone Group portfolio company Incenter (joining previous investors Upfront Ventures and Dallas Capital). He brings a deep understanding of the digital mortgage space and two decades of experience nurturing leading tech firms as a CEO, venture capitalist and co-founder.

"The mortgage industry has been waiting for decades for a modern, automated and intelligent software platform that drives down costs while improving compliance," said Schreck. "That software is finally here with cloudvirga, built inside a top originator and now in flight at eight of the country's top 40 non-bank originators. Our customers, whether retail or call center, now have a compelling answer to Rocket Mortgage and a proven path to reducing their costs."

Cloudvirga re-engineers the mortgage workflow to give consumers greater control over the loan application process and accelerate the mortgage sales funnel for loan officers. The company's digital mortgage technology delivers underwriter-ready loan applications with unmatched speed and quality, resulting in massively reduced costs to produce.

"Michael embodies the entrepreneurial mindset and enterprise expertise that will define the next phase of cloudvirga's growth," said Dallas. "His record of success leading top-caliber companies and attracting heavyweight global talent will benefit cloudvirga tremendously as the company continues to accelerate."

For 20 years, Schreck has built and led pioneering companies whose innovative technologies enable the world's leading brands to better engage with their customers. He most recently served as managing director of Altisource Labs, an innovation center within mortgage software provider Altisource Portfolio Solutions. In that role, he was responsible for overseeing more than 1,000 employees across four next-generation software and analytics companies, including leading software-as-a-service providers Equator and Mortgage Builder.

Schreck previously held CEO positions at digital publishing firm Zmags and government service provider Corrective Solutions. He also co-founded General Catalyst Partners, a multi-billion-dollar venture capital firm where Schreck helped develop successful startups including Upromise, SmartBargains, m-Qube and CoreMetrics. Collectively, these companies were acquired for over $1 billion by SLM, GSI Commerce, VeriSign and IBM, respectively.

Schreck started his career as a strategy consultant at McKinsey & Company and Monitor Company. He holds an MBA degree from Harvard Business School and a bachelor's degree from Brigham Young University.

About cloudvirga(SM):

Cloudvirga's next-generation loan officer and direct-to-consumer point-of-sale (POS) systems re-imagine the digital mortgage process by leveraging data and automation to address back-office compliance tasks earlier in the loan process, radically cutting overall loan costs, increasing transparency and reducing the time it takes to close a loan for both borrowers and lenders. Founded by top fintech veterans with a proven track record of building mortgage-related technologies, cloudvirga is committed to delivering software that reinvents the mortgage process for lenders and borrowers. Cloudvirga's initial customer roster includes eight of the top 40 non-bank mortgage originators in the United States.

For more information, visit http://www.cloudvirga.com/ or follow cloudvirga on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company-beta/7577062/.

* PHOTO for Media: Send2Press.com/mediaboom/17-0613s2p-Schreck-300dpi.jpg
* PHOTO Caption: Michael Schreck joins cloudvirga as CEO.

*Editorial Note: Usage of company name "cloudvirga" is lower case except when starting a sentence, and is a service mark of cloudvirga, Inc.

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Free News Articles, Government

5 BARS to Develop Wireless Marketing Plan and Small Cell Program for the City of Fresno, California

IRVINE, Calif. -- 5 Bars Communities, dba XG Communities, a premier provider of wireless master plans, asset marketing agreements and engineering services for cities and municipalities across the United States, announced today an agreement to develop a Wireless Marketing Plan for the City of Fresno, California.

5 Bars(r) Communities has entered into a multi-year agreement with the City of Fresno and will begin marketing the city's assets for small cell and wireless use. This effort will enhance the ability of Fresno's citizens to access high speed wireless connectivity throughout the city. The comprehensive program encompasses intelligent infrastructure technologies, Smart City initiatives and 5G wireless planning.

"This plan allows the City of Fresno to move forward in our 'Smart City' efforts while identifying innovative funding streams that are a part of our ongoing strategy of prudent fiscal management," said Fresno Mayor Lee Brand.

As wireless carriers densify existing networks, it is estimated that the industry will deploy hundreds of thousands of small cells, making it increasingly difficult for cities to manage the applications process. In collaboration with the carriers, 5 Bars will streamline applications with a predictable process while preserving aesthetics. The State of California is looking to pass preemptive legislation SB649 intended to reduce control over ROW.

"We are excited to move forward with 5 Bars and this agreement in order to bring greater coverage to our City, create a platform for Smart City initiatives and drive new revenue to Fresno," said Bryon Horn, CIO, Fresno.

"We are thrilled to be working alongside the City of Fresno's leadership as they look to advance their wireless footprint in the growing environment for 5G and Smart City infrastructure," said Monnie McGaffigan, President, 5 Bars Communities.


5 Bars will act as an advocate for the City, offering its intelligent platform which provides an ongoing solution that identifies opportunities for wireless collocation, while minimizing impacts from wireless facility siting decisions. The decision for Fresno to partner with 5 Bars was based on maintaining control, preventing visual blight and increasing connectivity for businesses, residents and citizens. The solution will be the basis to deploy Smart City, enhance business investment, and improve city services.

About 5 Bars Communities:

5 Bars Communities, dba XG Communities in Irvine, California. A premier provider of Small Cell Wireless Marketing Plans and engineering services for Communities, developing comprehensive wireless strategies.

About Fresno:

In the Top 10 Largest Cities in California with 515,609 residents. 24th most livable city in the U.S. for people 35 and under! The city has become an economic hub of the San Joaquin Valley. With a robust public infrastructure, Fresno equals quality lifestyle with a low cost of living and numerous National Parks.

More information: http://5bars.com/communities

Media Contact:
5 Bars Communities
(949) 514-4617
info@5bars.com

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Business, Free News Articles, Funding and Investment

Mortgage Automation Pioneer cloudvirga Raises $15 Million in Series B Funding

IRVINE, Calif. -- cloudvirga(SM), developer of the automated, cloud-based intelligent Mortgage Platform(R) (iMP), announced today it has raised $15 million in a series B funding round led by Incenter, a Blackstone Group portfolio company. The new funding will support cloudvirga as it scales its technology and expands its product offerings.

Cloudvirga's flagship mortgage point-of-sale (POS) system, the iMP empowers consumers to take the helm of a completely re-engineered mortgage workflow that automates the entire initial disclosures process and delivers unmatched transaction speed and efficiency to both borrowers and lenders. Central to cloudvirga's success is its ability to maintain strict regulatory compliance, reduce time to close and save lenders money by moving many traditional back-office tasks to the front of the loan process.

"Unprecedented mortgage regulation has exacerbated an already labor-intensive lending process and inconsistent consumer experience, making our solution more viable than ever," said Kyle Kamrooz, co-founder of cloudvirga. "We are thrilled to have the support of such a well-respected group of investors and look forward to continuing to shake up an antiquated industry process."

According to a key investor spokesperson, the mortgage industry is at a technological tipping point that is uniquely addressed by cloudvirga's innovation and enterprise solution. A fintech company at its core, cloudvirga launched its iMP in early 2016 and has since partnered with several mega and mid-tier lenders to process more than $15 billion in loans.

About cloudvirga(SM)
Cloudvirga is the company behind the cloud-based intelligent Mortgage Platform(R) (iMP) designed to streamline the mortgage process. The platform is digitizing the mortgage industry by leveraging data and deploying an automated workflow to reduce overall cost, increase transparency and shorten the time it takes to close a loan for both borrowers and lenders. Founded by Bill Dallas, Kyle Kamrooz and Mark Attaway, seasoned financial veterans with a proven track record of building mortgage-related technologies, cloudvirga is disrupting the antiquated mortgage industry.

For more information, visit http://www.cloudvirga.com/ or follow cloudvirga on LinkedIn at: https://www.linkedin.com/company-beta/7577062/.

*LOGO for media: Send2Press.com/mediaboom/17-0322s2p-cloudvirga-300dpi.jpg

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Business, Free News Articles

Alessandro Feitosa joins 5 Bars as Vice President, Solution Engineering

IRVINE, Calif. -- 5 BARS(R) announced today that Alessandro Feitosa has joined 5 Bars as Vice President, Solution Engineering. Alessandro brings 15 years of experience and expertise in the sports and technology space. He has led strategic pursuits and deployments across the globe.

Alessandro has been involved with the design, engineering, installation and management of high density Wi-Fi networks, including World Cup Soccer, MLB, NHL and NBA facilities as well as dozens of stadiums worldwide.

Prior to joining 5 Bars, Alessandro held key technology roles at Nokia, Cisco, Juniper Networks and Ruckus Wireless.

"We are beyond thrilled to have Alessandro join the 5 Bars team," said Monnie McGaffigan, President of 5 Bars. "His expertise in this space is second to none and anyone that has worked with Alessandro appreciates his experience and commitment to excellence."

About 5 Bars:

5 Bars is an Irvine, California based, privately held premier provider of Wireless Master Plans for Counties, Cities, Stadiums and Large Scale Venues developing comprehensive wireless strategies through a unique holistic view of all assets, coverage and capacity.

5 Bars offers fully managed wireless solutions, network development, ownership and end-to-end management delivering commercial indoor and outdoor distributed antenna systems (DAS), carrier-grade Wi-Fi networks, and small cell systems on behalf of cities, properties and service providers.

For more information, visit http://5bars.com/.

Media Contact:
5 Bars
(949) 514-4617
info@5bars.com

*LOGO: Send2Press.com/mediaboom/17-0324s2p-5-bars-sports-300dpi.jpg

5 BARS(R) is a U.S. registered trademark.

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Business, Free News Articles, Insurance, Private Practice and Medical Groups

Simple Recovery Announces In-network Services with Anthem Blue Cross

COSTA MESA, Calif. -- Simple Recovery, www.simple-recovery.com, a leading Chemical Dependency Treatment Center in Orange County, California, announced today their ability to provide in-network addiction treatment services through 14 major insurance carriers, including Anthem Blue Cross. The announcement is a significant indication that Simple Recovery is committed to providing the highest quality care to as many individuals as possible.

Simple Recovery underwent a demanding clinical evaluation with several managed care organizations to obtain in-network contracts, most recently with Anthem Blue Cross.

"As a Joint Commission accredited behavioral healthcare organization, the high standards required by in-network payers aligned well with our organizational culture and practices," noted Dr. Stephen Odom, CEO of New Vista Behavioral Health, the parent company of Simple Recovery.

Serving over 8.3 million members in California alone, Anthem Blue Cross covers more Californians than any other PPO insurance provider in the state. Data from the California Department of Insurance asserts that 35 percent of Californians have Anthem Blue Cross as their insurance carrier.

"Our partnership with managed care companies is a crucial element of the high-quality and high-value services we provide at Simple Recovery, and we are honored to become an in-network provider," said Dr. Odom. "When Simple Recovery became an in-network provider with most major carriers, not only could we continue to provide the high-quality treatment services that we are known for, but we can now also provide help to more people within their preferred provider networks."

Since opening its doors in 2012, Simple Recovery has helped hundreds of individuals and their families recover from drug and alcohol addiction. Their in-network provider list now includes Aetna Behavioral Health, American Mental Health Network, Anthem Blue Cross, Beacon Health Strategies, LLC (formerly Valueoptions), ComPsych, HMC Healthworks, Integration Behavioral Health (IBH), Magellan Health which manages many California Blue Shield plans), Managed Health Network (MHN), Multiplan, Network by Design, and Western Growers.

About Simple Recovery:

Founded in 2012, Simple Recovery is a Joint Commission Accredited, California licensed and certified, 18-bed residential and extended care program for men and women. Their addiction treatment program seeks to meet each client where they are at in their addiction and help them incorporate their newfound sobriety into their existing world. The achievement and maintenance of sobriety, success and self-respect occurs through both the drug and alcohol treatment process and behavioral change. Simple's successful model bridges the gap between the confines of treatment and real life.

About New Vista Behavioral Health:

New Vista Behavioral Health's mission is to provide innovative, client-centered, evidence-based, treatment solutions to create a healthy and productive new vista for recovery and success. Their centers offer sub-acute detox, residential, partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient, and outpatient services for clients facing Substance Use and Co-Occurring Disorders.

For more information about Simple Recovery and the services they provide, please visit http://www.simple-recovery.com/ or call 888-207-0965.

Media Contact:
Chelsea Brigham, Clinical Outreach Manager
425-890-5162
Chelsea.brigham@newvistabh.com

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Free News Articles, Sports and Activities

5 BARS Resets the Wi-Fi ‘BAR’ for Wireless Data Usage and Performance During Sunday’s Super Bowl LI

IRVINE, Calif. -- 5 BARS(R), a premier provider of wireless solutions, set a new record for any single-day wireless data usage event on the Wi-Fi system installed and operating at NRG Stadium. During Super Bowl LI, the Wi-Fi system recorded data usage of 12.2 TB, exceeding last year's record from Levi Stadium.

Overall data usage exceeded 40 TB when cellular data usage is included. Verizon reported a 57% increase over last year with 11 terabytes of cellular data usage. AT&T reported an 88% increase to 9.8 terabytes. Sprint reported a three-fold increase to 5.0 terabytes. T-Mobile reported data usage nearly twice as much as usual, with 2.1 terabytes reported last year.

5 Bars worked with the NFL, Verizon, Super Bowl Host Committee, Harris County Sports & Convention Corporation and SMG to plan, design and build the technologically advanced high density Wi-Fi network to support the specific needs of the sellout crowd at NRG Stadium for the 2017 Super Bowl. Connectivity was the top priority to ensure maximum fan interaction during the big game.

"We are beyond pleased with the performance of the network 5 Bars delivered to NRG Stadium on Sunday. The day was filled with new records and unexpected outcomes, and we are so proud to be a part of history," said Monnie McGaffigan, President of 5 Bars. "The partnership and team work involved to bring a state of the art Wi-Fi network and exceptional experience to 77,000 fans was nothing short of herculean," declared McGaffigan.

About 5 Bars:

5 Bars is an Irvine, California based, privately held premier provider of Wireless Master Plans for Counties, Cities and Large Scale Venues developing comprehensive wireless strategies through a unique holistic view of all assets, coverage and capacity. 5 Bars offers fully managed wireless solutions, network development, ownership and end-to-end management delivering commercial indoor and outdoor distributed antenna systems (DAS), carrier-grade Wi-Fi networks, and small cell systems on behalf of properties and service providers.

For more information visit http://www.5bars.com/.

*PHOTO for media: Send2Press.com/mediaboom/17-0208s2p-nrg5bars-300dpi.jpg

MEDIA CONTACT:
5 Bars
(949) 514-4617
info@5bars.com

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Business, Free News Articles, Insurance

EPIC Strengthens Southern California Benefits Team with the Acquisition of Benefit Compass

IRVINE, Calif. -- EPIC Insurance Brokers and Consultants, a retail property & casualty insurance brokerage and employee benefits consultant, announced today it has acquired Benefit Compass Insurance Services, LLC, a specialist in employee benefits brokerage and consulting services.

Based in Irvine, Calif., Benefit Compass provides employee benefit solutions, human resource consulting and employee engagement strategies, with a particular specialty focus on the unique needs of auto dealers.

Benefit Compass will further broaden the specialized benefits and HR consulting services available to EPIC clients, particularly new car auto dealers - a long time area of expertise and focus for EPIC, the broker providing Workers' Compensation Insurance and Employee Benefits Programs to members of the California New Car Dealers Association since 2011.

"The addition of the Benefit Compass team is an exciting development in the continuing growth of EPIC," said John Connell, EPIC President, Employee Benefits of California. "Our clients benefit significantly when we add top professionals like the Benefit Compass team with unique and highly specialized consulting skills and experience."

Benefit Compass co-founders Ron Joy, Alison McCallum and Mark Pattinson added, "We are very proud of the fact that we have always adhered to the simple philosophy of doing what's in the best interest of our clients, and are extremely pleased that this philosophy aligns strongly with EPIC's own culture and values. As part of EPIC, we have access to more resources, experienced professionals in multiple disciplines, and extensive insurance company relationships - all of which will provide added value to our current and future clients."

Since The Carlyle Group became the firm's major investment partner in December 2013, EPIC has nearly tripled revenues, from roughly $80 million to current run rate revenues exceeding $200 million.

About EPIC:
EPIC is a unique and innovative retail property and casualty and employee benefits insurance brokerage and consulting firm. EPIC has created a values-based, client-focused culture that attracts and retains top talent, fosters employee satisfaction and loyalty and sustains a high level of customer service excellence. EPIC team members have consistently recognized their company as a "Best Place to Work" in multiple regions and as a "Best Place to Work in the Insurance Industry" nationally.

EPIC now has more than 850 team members operating from offices across the U.S., providing Property Casualty, Employee Benefits, Specialty Programs and Private Client solutions to more than 13,000 clients.

With more than $200 million in revenues, EPIC ranks among the top 20 retail insurance brokers in the United States. Supported by the Carlyle Group, the company continues to expand organically and through strategic acquisitions across the country. For additional information, please visit http://www.epicbrokers.com/.

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